The Union Chapel is a gorgeous venue for music. As its name implies, it’s a dimly lit converted chapel, making it the perfect trap for acoustics… and singer/songwriters.
The other week, I was privileged to watch one such singer/songwriter at work. He was sensitive; his lyrics were brilliant. This is a man who has felt love. And pain. And love again.
Listening to him for a moment I thought: I hope a man has felt this way about me. And then I wised up. It’s men like this, I thought, ‘the sensitive ones’, that are doing the most damage to us, individually and to us as a group.
- They make women sound really, REALLY difficult. Heartbreakers. Cheats. Just. Plain. Hard. Work. We’re not, usually. If you’re straightforward, most of us — the best of us — respond in kind.
- These sensitive types play a sneaky game. They act like they desire a true equal, nay – a superior. They put us on a pedestal while other men snigger, ‘under the thumb.’ ‘Pussy whipped.’ ‘Henpecked.’ But don’t kid yourself. Men are men, and men want respect. Should the glow fade and the bloom fall off the rose, they will hold you accountable for their subjugation — even if was they who put the pattern in place.
- And when that happens, they will eviscerate you lyrically and publicly.
Okay — so not everyone has a stage and an audience. And I cannot deny that there is a world of female warblers out there playing the same (ahem) tune. You heard me, Taylor Swift.
Am I saying that men are incapable of feeling deeply or falling hard? Nope. Generally, I think men are more complex then we give them credit for. But we women fall victim to a number of fantasies and fictions. We know where to file a simpy romantic comedy, but the poetry and the intricacy of lyrics can suck us in differently. We tag these songs as our anthems; we devote them to past loves, and when we hear them, they often keep us down versus lifting us up. We wallow. We pine. We get stuck.
It’s time to get unstuck. When it comes to men — when it comes to anything for that matter — let’s seek to be elevated rather than sunk.
Longing, wanting, fighting: it’s that tension that makes it all seem worthwhile. But it’s deceptive, too, isn’t it? If the best music collections comprise quality and cheese, don’t the best matches of people also balance passion, levity… and release?